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Former Liverpool midfielder embroiled in race row after FA charge for abusive language

SoccerBy Sunday World
Jonjo Shelvey
Jonjo Shelvey

Newcastle midfielder Jonjo Shelvey has been charged with using abusive language towards an opponent that included reference to ethnicity, race or nationality.

The Football Association misconduct charge relates to an incident which allegedly occurred during the Magpies' 2-0 Championship loss to Wolves at St James' Park on September 17.

A statement from the FA on Tuesday said: "It is alleged that in or around the 87th minute of the fixture, he (Shelvey) used abusive and/or insulting words towards an opponent.

"It is further alleged that this breach of Rule E3(1) is an "Aggravated Breach" as defined in Rule E3(2), as it included reference to ethnic origin and/or race and/or nationality."

Newcastle's Vurnon Anita was sent off in the 87th minute of the game following a challenge on Wolves substitute Ivan Cavaleiro, although there is no suggestion Shelvey's charge relates to that incident.

Shelvey has until November 16 to respond to the charge.

If found guilty the 24-year-old faces a ban of at least five games, which would rule him out of action until mid-December.

In May 2013, the FA introduced new rules to ensure racist or other discriminatory abuse by players would carry a minimum five-match ban.

The rules came after a review of sanctions following the high-profile cases which saw John Terry banned for four matches and Luis Suarez for eight for racist abuse on the pitch.

Shelvey, who has won six caps for England, joined Newcastle from Swansea in January, but could not prevent the club's relegation to the Championship.

He has played in all of Newcastle's league games so far this season, though, as the Magpies top the table by three points and his loss would be a major blow for the club.